Do’s and Don’ts for Buying Furniture on a Budget

With the real estate market as expensive as it is here in the Bay Area – once you buy the house – how do you decorate it?  Thought I would share this article – enjoy!  

Do’s and Don’ts for Buying Furniture on a Budget

Furniture can be crazy expensive, and investing in designer or heirloom pieces isn’t always feasible. So how can you furnish your home with pieces that look and feel like they’ll last longer than a season? At Décor Aid, we always try to score the best deals for our clients. Here are some of our designers’ best tips for maximizing your budget.

Do be willing to buy floor models

You can save a lot of money by purchasing pieces at the end of the season when stores are changing their display to new collections. If you find an inexpensive wooden piece but the shade is too light, you can restain it darker. If it’s slightly damaged, it might be easy to repair.

Don’t forget to inspect floor models thoroughly

Sit on a chair to ensure it’s sturdy. Push on a table to make sure it doesn’t wobble. Open and close dresser drawers to check that they slide smoothly. Look at the quality of the finish–there should be no bubbles, peeling, or chips, and the color should seem evenly applied. The upholstery seams should be straight and there shouldn’t be any holes in the fabric.

Obtain as much information about the piece’s history as you can: How long it has been on the floor? Was it a customer return? If it was a customer been a return, beware–it’s full history is unknown. Find all the skeletons in the closet before deciding whether or not to purchase.

Do consider buying a replica

This is a great way to get a high-end looking piece without a major investment. Although these pieces are not heirloom quality, depending on use they will last a long time. If you later decide the piece no longer fits your style or works in your space, you won’t feel bad selling it or swapping it out.

Don’t buy something that feels flimsy

As a general rule, if a piece is lightweight, then it’s probably not sturdy or well-made. Even engineered wood products, such as furniture made from MDF (medium density fiberboard) are heavy if they are a good quality. Solid wood items are preferable.

Do pay attention to the fabric

Natural fibers and fabrics are preferable, but most have synthetics mixed in–even the most high-end textiles have a small percentage woven through for durability and stain resistance. Buying fabrics mixed with synthetics can help you keep costs down, but consider the quality:  A fabric with about half or less synthetic is fine, as long as it still has a natural look and feel.

The most durable fabrics for upholstery are velvet and tweed. For windows, linen provides privacy and lets light in. Wool sateen is the ultimate choice for a more substantial fabric: its ultra-luxurious, and drapes well with a subtle sheen.

Don’t forget to consider your lifestyle

If you have kids or pets, or you’re choosing a piece for a high-traffic area, we often recommend indoor/outdoor fabrics. They are super durable and beautiful, so you don’t have to worry that your living room is full of patio furniture.

If you or a family member has allergies, synthetic fabrics are the way to go. Ultra suede and micro suede fabrics feel lush and soft. It has a thin pile, so it doesn’t collect dust like thicker weaves do. They are also durable, versatile, and available in every color imaginable.

I read this article at: https://www.decoraid.com/dos-and-donts-for-buying-furniture-on-a-budget/

https://www.decoraid.com/dos-and-donts-for-buying-furniture-on-a-budget/#sthash.dQ3DVmBZ.dpuf

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ARE DINING ROOMS DEAD? 5 BETTER WAYS TO USE THAT SPACE – by Brightnest

Have you checked out Brightnest?  Of course I have – being a home addict and a Realtor.  I’ve really enjoyed playing with the app and reading the newsletters.  When this article popped into my inbox – I was intrigued!  Be rid of the dinning room?!  What?  But then I thought about it, and how much lives have changed.  It may not work for everyone – but I was an interesting ready – enjoy!

ARE DINING ROOMS DEAD? 5 BETTER WAYS TO USE THAT SPACE

How many times did your family use your dining room last year? If you can count the meals at the table on one hand, then you may want to consider repurposing that room. It can be hard to let go of the dining-room dream, but let’s be realistic. A room that only gets used during holidays isn’t worth keeping.

If you’re willing to break out of the traditional dining-room mold, the possibilities can go a lot further than three-course meals and dress shoes. Here are five ways to get more from your dining room.

Convert it into a home office. Picture your large dining room table. Now picture that same dining room table with one chair. Boom! You now have the home office you’ve always wanted. Let your china cabinet double as office supplies storage and use this space as an office for 360 days a year. For the 5 days that you host large dinners, simply clear off your office supplies and add the extra chairs back to the table!

Keep it as the party room. If you love entertaining people but hate the idea of hosting a formal dinner, turn your dining room into hang-out central. Replace your dining room table with a pool table and install a bar along one wall for finger food and cocktails. The dining room will quickly become the most popular room in the house!

Make it a morning cafe. Instead of squandering every square inch of the room with an oak table that sits eight, place a couple small, café style tables in the room. Small tables are more inviting when you’re enjoying a cup of coffee, reading the paper or even opening the mail. Plus, smaller tables are easy to move around and join together (just in case a dinner party of eight does actually happen).

Turn it into a guest room. If your extended family treats your house as their free hotel, consider installing a Murphy bed in your dining room. Most of the time it will simply look like a shelf and you can use the room for whatever your heart desires. Then, when guests arrive, it instantly turns into an impromptu guest bedroom.

Make it playtime central. If you spend a lot of time in the kitchen and love the idea of your kids playing close by, then turn your dining room into their playroom. Ditch the fancy table and replace it with a craft table and add toy bins or book shelves. We also recommend adding a comfy rug for optimal toy enjoyment.

What do you think?  Please share your thoughts by email or comment – thank you!  -Sabrina

I read this article at: https://brightnest.com/posts/are-dining-rooms-dead-5-better-ways-to-use-that-space

Got Questions? – The Caton Team is here to help.

Email Sabrina & Susan at:  Info@TheCatonTeam.com

Call us at: 650-568-5522

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Thanks for reading – Sabrina